The Reason Behind the Exit Interview
First of all, we think you should know the reason behind giving these interviews in the first place. The reason is that businesses use these interviews to understand the situation on the inside. By understanding what happened to you, they can make changes to make sure it does not happen to someone else.
So, if you thought these interviews were for your benefit, they are not. You are helping the company fix its mistakes to keep the rest of its employees happy.
One of the reasons you might want to participate is to look professional and leave one last good impression on the employers by acting nice. The effects of your niceness mean that the rest of the people in your company can have a better work environment. Simply talking about issues you encountered, such as communication problems, general inefficiencies, and a toxic environment can help a company make meaningful changes.
Examples of such cases include workplaces where you have seen harassment affect your coworkers. That problem will not fix itself if you leave after giving vague answers. So, you can use this opportunity to raise some red flags. The company can then look into the situation and deal with it accordingly.
It could be the last conversation you have with any of them so, you should try to be honest.
An exit interview being a selfless act is not necessarily true; what you need to decide before the interview is not something like whether or not you should lie. It is the reason you are accepting it in the first place.
Do you want to look professional?
Do you want to help the company improve?
Do you want to give your ex-coworkers a better workplace?
Do you want to treat the interview as if it is therapy?
How much you should open up depends on this.
Leaving Dramatically but In the Right Way
Now, what if you want to let loose every complaint you have? Should you do that in the first place? We do not recommend it. If you continue working in the same industry, running into your old company will make things problematic and awkward for you.
But, if you feel like you have to make things clear, it is necessary to prepare for it beforehand. It is better to prepare what you are going to say. That way, you can leave knowing that the company knows what you went through. You should be clear about what you want to say instead of talking about things as you remember them. Sadly, although you might want to, screaming your heart out in the exit interview is not an option.
If your experience with the company was terrible enough that you have nothing nice to say to them, and you do not want to help them in any way either, the best option is to decline the exit interview. If the company is toxic, the questions they ask in the interview might annoy or anger you; that is why it is better to avoid them entirely.
Although you might feel like not explaining your side is a wasted opportunity, remember that you will likely have nothing to do with that company in the future, and you have already picked the option that is best for you.
As we said, although it looks simple, there are layers to the exit interview, and you need to prepare for it if you want to get results from it. So, if you have an interview coming up or are thinking of quitting, make sure you know how to handle that situation properly.